Web page sponsored by General Dynamics Land Systems Force Protection Europe (GDLS FPE)
02 Mar 15. Sierra Leone: OP GRITROCK. To date, the UK has committed £325m to eradicating Ebola in Sierra Leone. The number of new cases has fallen dramatically in recent weeks. (Written Answer (WA), 2 Mar 15.)
A shortfall of $900m remains to fund the response to Ebola for the next six months. (UN Briefing, 2 Mar 15.)
Representatives of three Countries (Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone) said that they would “seek to reach zero infections” by 15 Apr 15. (WSJ, 4 Mar 15.)
Comment: 23,983 confirmed, probable and suspected cases of EVD (Ebola Virus Disease) have been reported in the three most affected Countries (Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone). 9,823 deaths have been reported.
(UN Situation Report, 6 Mar 15.) (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 15/11, 09 Mar 15)
01 Mar 15. Iraq: OP SHADER. During his second visit to Cyprus, the Defence Secretary met RAF personnel from 903 Expeditionary Air Wing who are providing the UK.s contribution to coalition air Operations against ISIL. The Defence Secretary also met troops from 2nd Bn, Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment involved in training the Iraqi Security Forces. Approximately 500 UK personnel are supporting OP SHADER in the wider region. (MoD, 1 Mar 15.)
UK military assets in the region include: HMS DAUNTLESS; HMS KENT; eight Tornado GR4 (Akrotiri); two C-130 Hercules (Akrotiri); one Voyager air-to-air refuelling aircraft (Akrotiri); two E-3D Sentry (Akrotiri) and Reaper unmanned aerial vehicles. (MoD, 1 Mar 15.)
The Defence Secretary travelled to Kuwait, meeting the Kuwaiti Prime Minister and Defence Minister. En route to Kuwait, the Defence Secretary met HM The King of Jordan and the Jordanian Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. (MoD, 2 Mar 15.)
British Forces continued to conduct air Operations to assist the Iraqi Government. (MoD, 4 Mar 15.)
Army specialists will train Kurdish Peshmerga in the use of Vallon metal detectors. The specialists will be based in Erbil. (Army, 5 Mar 15.)
Comment: A Ministerial Reply (6 Mar 15) confirmed that the strengthening of Iraq’s Security Forces formed “a regular part of our engagement with the Government of Iraq….” (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 15/11, 09 Mar 15)
06 Mar 15. Afghanistan: OP TORAL. The UK has made an enduring commitment to Afghanistan and is now contributing around 470 troops to the NATO Resolute Support Mission. The UK has also committed £70m a year until 2017 to help sustain the Afghan National Security Forces and £178m a year in development aid. (WA, 6 Mar 15.)
Comment: The Defence Secretary was asked (5 Mar 15) whether he was going to “launch an Inquiry into the conduct of the war in Afghanistan”. The Ministerial reply was somewhat evasive: “The Government will want to look at broader lessons that can be learned from the Campaign” (and more in a similar vein).
03 Mar 15. Mexico: State Visit. The President of the United Mexican States made a State Visit to the United Kingdom from 3 to 5 Mar 15. The President was accompanied by the Minister for Foreign Affairs of the United Mexican States. The two Foreign Ministers signed various ‘instruments’ (memoranda and agreements) during the State Visit.
Comment: During his State Visit the President attended a State Banquet at Buckingham Palace hosted by HM The Queen as well as taking part in a business leaders’ meeting with the Deputy Prime Minister. The President is said to have discussed future co-operation in the oil and gas sector with the Prime Minister. (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 15/11, 09 Mar 15)
27 Feb 15. Gurkhas: Bicentenary. The Personnel Minister said (27 Feb 15) that the Brigade of Gurkhas will be holding many events this year to mark the 200th anniversar